Scruples

Padre Quadrupani addresses the problem of scrupulosity, which plagues many sincerely devoted souls at some point in their spiritual development.

“Scrupulosity,” writes Quadrupani, “is an unreasonable fear of sin in matters where there is not even material for sin. But the victim does not call his doubts and fears scruples, for he would not be tormented by them if he believed he could give them that name.”

“Scruples warp the judgment, disturb the peace of the soul, beget mistrust of the Sacraments and estrangement from them, and impair the health of body and mind.”

“There are persons who look upon scrupulosity as a virtue, confounding it with delicacy of conscience, whereas it is, on the contrary, not only a defect but one of a most dangerous character.”

“The devout and learned Gerson says that a scrupulous conscience often does more injury to the soul than one that is too lax and remiss.”

“By sadness and anxiety the children of God do a great injury to their Heavenly Father. They thereby seem to bear witness that there is little happiness to be found in the service of a Master so full of love and mercy, and to give the lie to the words of Him who said: ‘Come unto Me all you that labor and are heavily burdened and I will refresh you.'”

Quotations from Carlo Giuseppe Quadrupani, Light and Peace: Instructions for Devout Souls to Dispel Their Doubts and Allay Their Fears (St. Louis: B. Herder, 1898).

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